Smaller schools suc­ceed in math

The Invercargill Eye - - PRECIOUS PETS - RE­BECCA MOORE Other re­sults:

Fiord­land Col­lege stu­dents Jack McGlade, Lisa Scott, Blake De Bet­ten­cor and So­phie Wil­lans, all 12, won first place in this year’s South­land Maths As­so­ci­a­tion maths com­pe­ti­tion year 7 sec­tion.

South­land Maths As­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent Bryan Forde said he was im­pressed at the win.

‘‘It is the first time Fiord­land has won any sec­tion, which is very good for a small school,’’ he said.

It seemed the smaller schools were the ones that shone at this year’s com­pe­ti­tion.

‘‘Hedge­hope get­ting third in that sec­tion was fairly awe­some. It is a very small school.’’

The com­pe­ti­tion has been run­ning for about 45 years, and this year 35 schools took part.

Stu­dents had 30 min­utes to an­swer up to 40 prob­lem solv­ing ques­tions in groups of four, with ques­tions get­ting more dif­fi­cult as they went on, Forde said.

It taught the stu­dents prob­lem solv­ing skills, co op­er­a­tion and team work.

‘‘They ben­e­fit from com­mu­ni­ca­tion, lis­ten­ing and par­tic­i­pa­tion, and con­fi­dence for the smaller schools.’’

It was open for all stu­dents, not just the top achiev­ers, to have a go and en­joy maths.

‘‘Tak­ing part is im­por­tant ... we see smiles, it’s good.’’

The com­pe­ti­tion was an ‘‘old school for­mula’’ that worked ev­ery year, for stu­dents from year 7 to 10.

‘‘The kids re­ally en­joy it, they have fun.’’

With tech­nol­ogy be­com­ing more prom­i­nent in young peo­ple’s lives, it was ever more im­por­tant that chil­dren did not let their maths slip.

The cal­cu­la­tor was a tool, but stu­dents needed to know how to use it, and know­ing their times ta­bles was also a pri­or­ity, Forde said.

Win­ners re­ceived cal­cu­la­tors val­ued at $140, and there were drink bot­tles, bags and gift vouch­ers up for grabs too.

Year 8 win­ners - James Hargest Col­lege 1 - Bri­anna Loan, Ti­mothy Hol­loway, Con­nor Steel and Danny Richard­son.

Year 9 win­ners - James Hargest Col­lege 1 - Daniel Har­ley, Re­gan Cross, Finn Cruick­shank and Henry Huynh.

Year 10 win­ners - Cen­tral South­land Col­lege 1 - Max Cowie, Justin Hin­dle, Ella Bryan and Har­riot Price.

RE­BECCA MOORE/STUFF

Fiord­land Col­lege stu­dents Jack McGlade, Lisa Scott, Blake De Bet­ten­cor and So­phie Wil­lians, all 12.

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